Archive:STAC 5/W3/10

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Locations in the Document

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Overview

This document is a Bill of Complaint by Thomas Whitney against Roger Vaughan brought before the Star Chamber in London.

The document describes a series of events, including assaults, attempted murders, murder, a bribed jury, breaking and entering, jury packing, as well as visits to a "tippling house" (a tavern) and a fair.

The National Archives dates this document to between 1580 and 1588. Because the murder of Richard Roe is stated to have taken place in October in the 20th year of the Queen's reign, this must be 20 Elizabeth I, which would be October 1578. Since the earlier attack was stated to have occurred 4 years before this document was written, this means this document must date from about 1582 or 1583.

The document is not in great shape, having several torn or broken off pieces. This is especially true of the bottom right corner, where a large triangular section is completely missing. There are also several places where the document is folded over upon itself, the vertical folds hiding sections of words on several lines and the horizontal folds hiding long portions of two lines. There is also significant water damage and blurring in places, especially along the bottom and right-hand side of the document.

Locations

  • Clifford - Where Richard Roe was murdered in October, 1578, by Roger Lowyd and Ievan Griffith, two servants of Roger Vaughan, supposedly at his direction
  • Dinedor - where Roger Vaughan forcibly entered a piece of property
  • Eardisley - Where Richard Roe was supposedly assaulted by Roger Lies, four years prior
  • Kington - A market town and the site of the fair where Thomas Whitney was assaulted by a large group of Roger Vaughan's associates.
  • Kinnersley - Home of Roger Vaughan
  • Whitney - Home of Sir James Whitney

People

Whitney Alliance

  • Sir James Whitney of Whitney
  • Richard Roe, servant of Sir James Whitney
    • Supposedly assaulted by Roger Vaughan at Hereford, five years prior
    • Supposedly assaulted by Roger Lies at Eardisley, four years prior
    • Supposedly murdered in October, 1578 at Clifford by Roger Lowyd and Ievan Griffith, two servants of Roger Vaughan, supposedly at his direction
  • Thomas Whitney, servant of Sir James Whitney
  • Roger Gittod, servant of Sir James Whitney
  • Jonas Gravender, servant of Sir James Whitney

Vaughan Alliance

  • Roger Vaughan of Kinnersley
  • Roger Lies, servant of Roger Vaughan
    • supposedly assaulted Richard Roe at Eardisley, four years prior, at the direction of Roger Vaughan
  • Roger Lowyd, servant of Roger Vaughan
    • Supposedly murdered Richard Roe in October, 1578 at Clifford, at the direction of Roger Vaughan
  • Ievan Griffith, servant of Roger Vaughan
    • Supposedly murdered Richard Roe in October, 1578 at Clifford, at the direction of Roger Vaughan
  • Charles Vaughan, brother of Roger Vaughan
  • Alexander Vaughan, brother of Roger Vaughan
  • Richard Vaughan, cousin of Roger Vaughan
  • James ap Robert
  • Thomas ap Richard
  • Thomas ap Owen
  • Pierre Millward, "a common Dronkerd and pick___ quarreller"
  • Humphrey Lithe
  • Howell ap John
  • Richard Galled
  • Richard John Jenkyn
  • Morgan John Byvor
  • Howell John Byvor
  • Thomas ap Rece
  • Cadogan ap Morgan, "a common quarreller"
  • David ap David, "a common quarreller"

Others

  • John Thomas, foreman of the jury that acquitted Roger Lies
  • John Dallaber, Esquire
  • John Barington, Gentleman
  • Edmund Walter, Esquire, Chief Justice

Transcription

To the Quenes most excellent ma[jes]ty

In most humble wise Complayninge showeth and informeth yo[u]r ma[jes]ty yo[u]r highnes true faythfull and obediente Subiect Thomas Whitney servant to the right worshippfull S[i]r James Whitney knight That [folded] r Vaughahn of Kynerdsly in yo[u]r highnes County of Heref[or]d gentleman beinge a very malicious contentious and disorderely p[er]son hath of longe tyme w[i]thout any cause or occasion to him geven or offerred borne __ortall malic[folded] hatred to the s[ai]d S[i]r James Whitney and yo[u]r ma[jes]ties said Subject and all other the Servantes and wellwillers of the said S[i]r James Whitney practisinge and p[ro]vokinge from tyme to tyme all wayes and meanes possible both directly and indirectly to disturbe molest vex and trouble them by wrongefull sute Quarell and braules [folded] and if ability and opportunitie had served to mischief spoile and willfully to murder them as it may evidently appere by the sund[torn] unlawfull attemptes and overt actes by the said Roger Vaughan of Late tyme put in ___ _____ where one Richard Roe late servant to the said S[i]r James Whitney was uppon necessary occasion of Business at the Citie of Heref[or]d withe said [torn] of Heref[or]d aboute five yeres past the said Roger Vaughan havinge a sworde & dagger in his hande of a malicious mynd and p[ro]pensed malice borne to the said S[i]r James Whitney then and there made an assault and affray uppon the said Richar[torn] Roe beinge in godes peace and yo[u]r ma[jes]ties and would then have slayne him if by the p[re]sent ayde of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Subiectes he had not bin defended and Resendd? and when the said Roger Vaughan could not p[re]vayle in that lewed and wic[torn] act he procured one Roger Lies a very light and desp[er]ate p[er]son beinge his servant to geve the Like attempt w[hi]ch _iest about fower yeres past at Eardesly in the said County picked a quarell w[i]th the said Richard Roe attem[torn] upp[torn] the said S[i]r James Whitney then takinge the viewe of the Musters of Div[ers] yo[u]r ma[jes]ties subiects in those p[ar]tes by vertue [folded] Com[m]ission to him in that behalf directed and would then p[ar]ntly have fought w[i]th the said Richard [folded] Roe meaninge to have slain him if some of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties subiectes had not then s_ayed him from the same / Howe be it afterward [ folded ]rement of the said Roger Vaughan p[ro]cedinge on w[i]th a murderinge mind assemblinge sent himselfe Roger Lowyd and Ievan Griffith two other of the S[er]vantes of the said Roger Vaughan the said t_ief havinge a Maynepicke Lowys? a sword & dagger & [ folded ] picke staf in riotous and disordered man[ner] at Clifford in the said County about October in the xxth yere of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties most gracious raigne not havinge the feare of god before theire eyes nor regardinge theire duty to yo[u]r ma[jes]ty nor fearinge the penalty of [blurred] highnes Lawes Lay in awayte for the said Richard Roe and then and there made a cruel assault and affray uppon him and grevously wounded and murdered him for w[hi]ch murder the said Roger Lies_ was app[re]hended and committed Gaole in the said County and after before the Justice of Assises and Gaole Delivery of the said County a bill of Indictment was p[re]served against him for the said murder albeit there was direct and suspicious evidence geven to the greate enquest there to endicte him of the said murder yet by the unlawfullmeanes and travell of the said Roger Vaughan he was endicted but of manslaughter, and he beinge there uppon arrainded before the said Justice of Assise and Gaole deliv[er]y there unto pleded not giltie uppon w[hi]ch plea an Issue beinge Joyned a Jury w[folded] impanelled tried and Sworne for triall of the same, who by sinister practizes v[er]sed by the said Roger Vaughan and by reason that the said Roger Vaughan entred into a bond in a greate Som[m]e of monie & one John Thomas beinge foreman of the said enquest to save him harmelesse if they did acquite the said Roger Lies of the said felony and manslaughter gave upp theire verdict that the said Roger Lies was not guilty of the said ffelony and manslaughter contrary to the confession of the prison[er] himself and very direct and p_____nant evidence to them geven for w[hi]ch false and untrue verdict the Justice of the Assises and Gaole Delivery putt the said Jury under bondes to appeare in this honorable Courte to answere for the same w[hi]ch matter yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Subiecte did followe and solicite against the said Jury in this honorable Courte until they were convicted and attaynted of willfull p[ar]__ry after w[hi]ch attaynder the said Juror for avoyding of theire Corporall punishm[en]t Decreed against them, shifted themselves away by the p[ro]curement of the said Roger Vaughan and uppon his p[ro]mise to them made to p[ro]cure them p[ar]dones at yo[u]r ma[jes]ties handes for their sines and punishmente uppon them assessed for the said willfull p______ / And for that yo[u] ma[jes]ties said Subiect was a Solicitor in the said _____ in the honorable courte against the said Jury (as to his dutie did app[er]tayne) the said Roger Vaughan seekinge very maliciously aswell to be revenged uppon yo[u]r highnes said Subiect for the same as allso to ex[on]erate his old malice and furor against the said S[i]r James Whitney p[ro]cured one Charles Vaughan and Alexander Vaughan his brothers and one Richard Vaughan theire Cosen and div[ers]e other Lewes wicked and ill disposed p[er]sons to geve the attempt to murder yo[u]r ma[jes]ties said [blurred]iect ffor the accomplishinge whereof they espied this opportunitie where y[ou]r highnes said Subiect uppon the munday in the Whitson Weeke last was uppon some necessary occasion of Business at the fayer [fair] of keynton [Kington] in the said [blurred] the said Charles Vaughan Alexander Vaughan and Richard Vaughan together w[i]th James ap Robert[,] Thomas ap Richard[,] Thomas ap Owen[,] Pierre Millward[,] Humphrey Lithe[,] Howell ap John [---- blotched ----]tor Richard Galled, Richard John Jenkyn, Morgan John Byvor[,] Howell John Byvor and Thomas ap Rece w[i]th div[erse] other p[er]sons whose names yo[u]r ma[jes]ties said Subiect knoweth not beinge very light Desp[er]ate [blurred] p[er]sons & being armed and arrayed w[i]th Swordes and Bucklers Daggers fforest billes mayne pickes Longe Staves Javellinges and other weapons aswell invasive as defensive not havinge the feare of god before theire eyes nor regarding theire dutifull obedience to yo[u]r ma[jes]ty nor fearinge the pennalty of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Lawes and Statute[s] by the abbettment settinge on and encouragement of the said Roger Vaughan at the said Towne of Keynton the said Monday in whitson Weeke beinge in very riotous routous and warrlike man[ner] assembled made a Cruell assault and affray uppon yo[u]r ma[jes]ties said Subiect beinge then & there in godes peace and yo[u] ma[jes]ties and him sore hurt and wounded and would have murdered him if he had not bin forthw[i]th reskued by some others of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties saud Subiectes and one Roger Gittod and Jonas Graven[der] & ___other of the Servantes of the said S[i]r James Whitney beinge then in toward the said fayer and hearinge of the said assault and affray made uppon yo[u]r highnes said Subiect made hast to hime reskued him uppon whome allso the said malefactors videlt the said Charles Vaughan and Alexander Vaughan w[i]th all their said accomplice[s] made the Like assault and affray as aforesaid and very grevously hurt and wounded the said Roger Gittod to the greate p[er]ill of his Lief and of thother Jonas Gravener they did ap[ar][e]ntly slay and murder to the greate disturbance and terror of a greate number of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Lovinge Subiectes beinge then and there assembled at the said ffayer and against yo[u]r ma[jes]ties peace Crowne ___ Dig ____ And after that the said Charles Vaughan and and Alexandor Vaughan w[i]th the rest of theire said adherence had com[m]itted the said grevous mistemenors and murder they repayred to the dwellinge [hou]se of the said Roger Vaughan / Where the said Roger Vaughan knowinge very well that they had Comitted the said offences and that yo[u]r said Subiect and Roger Gittod were then rather like to Dye then to Live [blotched] said Jonas Gravender was then dead by the said Ro[folded] Vaughan relixed the said Charles and Alexander w[i]th meate Drinke & Lodginge and monie and gave unto the said Alexander Vaughan a gelldinge to ryde away w[i]th all And ap[--- blurred ---] the next fayer day holden at Keynton afore[said] the [------- blank --------] Last the said Roger Vaughan Sekinge the further breache of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties peace and quarelinge w[i]th the said S[i]r James Whitneys men in very vulgar [-- blurred --] rontous and warlike man[ner] assembled to[folded] sols_then? and there to the number of fortie p[er]sons beinge all armed and arrayed w[i]th sworde and Bucklers Daggers Maynepickes Longe staves and forest billes against yo[u]r ma[jes]ties [---- blurred ----]tes in that case made and p[ro]vided [folded] to the greate feare and terror of all other yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Subiectes assembled at the said ffayer, and to the losse and hindrance of theire markette and Comodities And the [ blurred ] satisfied after th[folded] say aboute August last past he the said Roger Vaughan in like unlawfull riotous reclous and warrlike man[ner] assemblinge unto himself div[ers]e Lewed Light and Desp[ar]ate p[er]sons to [blurred] being all ____[folded] weaponed w[i]th Sworde and Bucklers fforest billes Longe Staves mayne pickes and other unlawfull weapons as well invasive as defensive came marchinge to the [blurred] re the said S[i]r James Whitney [blurred] dwelleth to p[ro]voke the said S[i]r James Whitney and his S[e]rvantes to Quarellinge and fightinge and when that masion offerred was not, nor would not be taken by the said [blotched] his S[e]rvates the said Roger Vaughan Left the said fortie p[er]sons in the tipplinge howse [tavern] w[i]thin a mile of the Dwellinge howse of the said S[i]r James Whitney meaninge they should lye there in a wait to [blotched] S[i]r James Whitney [folded] And that it may further appeare unto yo[u]r most excellent ma[jes]ty what a disordered and contentious p[er]son the said Roger Vaughan is and allways hath byn div[er]s other his unsemly and unlawfull [---------------- blurred -----------------] the same ffor where the said Roger Vaughan about fower yers past was Sheref of yo[u]r highnes County of Radnor in Wales he used very maleport undecent and unsemely [-------------------------------- blurred -------------------------------------] said County of Radnor sittinge uppon the Benche in place of Justice and shortly after the said Roger Vaughan beinge a Justice of peace in the said County of Radnor Quar[----------------------------- blurred ------------------------------------] of peace of the said County and thrust him from the bench settinge there in yo[u]r ma[jes]ties service in the p[re]sence of the said Edmund Walter Esquire Chief Justice of the said County [blurred] Roger Vaughan [blurred] [------------------------------- folded -------------------------------------] Justice of peace of the said Countye of Radnor And about twelve ____thes sence the said Roger Vaughan [--------------------------- blurred -------------------------] Esquire [--------------------------------- folded -------------------------------------] Vaughan havinge allso a Quarrell w[i]th one John Barington gentleman brought to the number of [----------------- blurred ------------------] man[ner] assembled and arrayed w[i]th div[erse] kynde of weopons as well invasive as defensive owte of the said County of Radnor into Heref[or]dshire to bandy and quarrell w[i]th the said John Barington And halve or about [---------- blurred ---------] for the gettinge and holdinge of a mere wrongefull pos[ses]sion at Dinedor in the said County of Heref[or]d against one John Dallaber Esquire gathere & _____ to the number of xxxth ____ in the said County of Radnor [------------ blurred --------------] County of Hered[or]d where they assemblinge them selves in very riotous rontous? and warrlike man[ner] beinge all weoponed arrayed ___ ____llinge mayne picke and fforest billes w[i]th div[ers]e other weapons by the [------------ blurred ------------] Roger Vaughan did forcebly and w[i]th Stronge hand brake and enter into one messuage at Dindor afforesaid uppon the quiet and peaceable possession __ the said John Del_____ and the _____ __ _______ ______ Did _e_e [-------- blurred ------] vowed by the Justice of peace of the said County of Heref[or]d and the said malefacto[r]s by the said Justices removed from the said possession and Comitted to the Gaole in the said County of Heref[or]d and for ______ [--- blurred ---][--- folded ---] desorders and to be redie by himself his people and retunue to committ Dayly Breaches of yo[u]r highnes peace riotte route and all man[ner] of mis____ the said Roger Vaughan hath R____ned unto his [blurred][---------------- torn --------------] mainetayne those lewed wicked infamous and notorious p[er]sons for theire sundry _______ whose names doe hereafter followes videlt [----------- blurred ------------] murder[- blurred -][----------------------------- torn ----------------------------] beinge indicted of felony at one another tyme and manslaughter and pled gilty of the same and saved only by the benefitt of the Clergie _________ Rosse indicted for fellony and saved only by the [---- blurred ----][-------------- torn --------------] master beinge Sherif that yere of the said County of Radnor whoe packinge a __ciall Jury of his kinesmen and ffrindes p[ro]cured the ____ Je___ ______sser _______ _____ and direct evidence [blurred and torn] Cadogan ap morgan a com[m]on quarreller David ap David a com[m]on quarreller Pierre Millward a com[m]on Dronkerd and pick___ quarreller John ______pp a com[m]on [blurred and torn] gatherer John Probert a gatherer of komortha David ap David a komortha gatherer and a com[m]on quarreller James ap Robt a not ____ _____ _____ havinge [blurred and torn] w[i]th div[erse] other of Like Lewednesse and ______ of Liest all very dissolute p[er]sons and contempt____ of yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Laws & Statute and or[blurred] that bett[blurred and torn] by the manifest contempt of his dutie as well to all mighty god as to yo[u]r ma[jes]ty ffor the said Roger Vaughan hath not ____ved the holi comm____ [blurred and torn] All w[i]th notorious most onerous? offence[s] desorders and contempte as well of the said Roger Vaughan as of his sa__ _____ _____ against [blurred and torn] in due tyme rep[re]ssed and severely punished they may tend to the greate encouragem[en]t of other Lewd wicked dissol[blurred and torn] utter salvasion of Justice and all ____ goverment ffor redresse there _____ of the ________ and to the [blurred and torn] __sample to all other such? Lewed wicked dissolute desp[ar]ate and dis_____ p[er]sons to the ____ [blurred and torn] most excellent ma[jes]ty the ______ ______ to grannt to yo[u]r highnes said Subiect [blurred and torn] [torn] ap Robert[,] Thomas ap Richard[,] Thomas ap Owen[,] Pierre Millward[,] Humfrey Lythe [blurred and torn] [torn]_____ thereby at a certaine time Day and under a certaine payne them to _____ ____ [blurred and torn] [---- torn ----]__ and to s___ ___ and _____ ____ further order and direction as by yo[u]r highnes [-- blurred --][---------------------------------- torn -------------------------------------] [---- torn ----]____ god for the _______ ____ ma[jes]ty m[u]ch health Longe to raigne ov[er] us.

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